Benicarló

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Benicarlo is a municipality of the Valencian Community, Spain. Located on the north coast of the province of Castellon, in the region of Bajo Maestrazgo. It has 26,744 inhabitants.

Access : Coordinates :40.416667, 0.416667 / By plane :  Castellon is now operative. Other close airports are those in Reus (125 Km) and Valencia (145 Km).
By train :  The Benicarlo-Peniscola train station is actually located in Benicarlo, around 10 Km from Peniscola.

By bus : Autos Mediterraneo  links local towns like Benicarlo or Vinaroz with Peniscola. There is only one line from Benicarlo or Vinaroz and the bus advert clearly the destination in the upper part.
By car :  From the Autopista del Mediterraneo AP-7 take the exit 43 to Peniscola-Benicarlo. Afterwards change to national road N-340 until the crossing with the CV-141. Continue throught the CV-141 to the CV-140, leading directly to Peniscola.

Highlights :

  •  Iberian town of the ” Puig de la Nao ”. The Puig de la Nao is a small mountain that is located to the north of the municipality of Benicarlo, next to the bed of the Aguaoliva ravine, which serves as a natural boundary between the territory of Vinaroz and Benicarlo. On the eastern slope of this mountain, at a height that ranges between 95 and 110 m. above sea level there are remains of an old settlement that could be the origin of the settlement of this coastal plain, but there is no archaeological evidence of continuity between the abandonment of the Puig (before the third century BC) and the birth from the farmhouses of Beni-Gazlum, Vinaroz, el Poaig .. (11th-12th centuries ). The Town of Puig de la Nau is of the type called “of slope”, with some streets of horizontal route that are adapted to the relief of the mountain, and others that ascend towards the high part where the wall is. The most outstanding thing that is observed at present is the high walls of the old houses, testimony of the oldest urban culture that developed in the Benicarlando territory.
  •  Iberian town of Tossa :  It is located on the top of the mountain of Tossa, west of the municipal district of Benicarlo, where the dividing line between this and that of the neighboring town, Calig, runs. The materials of this town found by the surface of the terraces that it occupies are the characteristic of the deposits of this type and chronology (6th-2nd century BC), with Iberian ceramics painted on the basis of a linear-geometric theme and a few plant motifs. At the foot of the Tossa, in the vicinity of the Basseta, was found in 1941 the Necropolis of Bovalar, whose urns, utensils and bronze trousseaus are similar to the materials of the necropolis of El Puig de la Nao.
  • Chapel of the Christ of the Sea :  (Church of San Pedro). It is located in the vicinity of the Port and is popularly known as the Ermita del Cristo del Mar; this Christ has always been the object of deep devotion in Benicarlo. Legend has it that in 1650 a felucca arrived at the beaches of Benicarlo from which Cesar Cataldo disembarked carrying an image of Christ on the Cross; His arrival was described as prodigious and the miracles that the Holy Image worked even more.
  • Parish Church of San Bartolome :  From the 18th century, with baroque facade and octagonal bell tower. The large baroque facade is made of stone and frames the front. It has two bodies: the upper one formed by a large niche with the image of San Bartolome that is topped by two Solomonic columns. The interior of the temple is a single nave with a transept and chapels between the buttresses; A large dome rises above the transept. The altarpiece of the Virgen del Remedio is a painting with the Virgin and Child sitting on the throne, surrounded by different saints. This work of art is attributed to the artist Vicente Macip.
  • Convent of San Francisco : Built around 1578  the Church, although reformed in the 18th century, conserves the original structure of the XVIth century  It has a single nave, without side chapels, has a simple and austere cloister, and the facade is topped by a cornice with a broken line, with a stone bulrush as the finishing touch.
  • Hermitage of San Gregori : It is two and a half kilometers from the town. It is a hermitage of ancient origin and the moment of its construction is unknown; the image of San Gregorio is a polychrome wooden carving, with rough but expressive features, probably from the first third of the 16th century. The hermitage has a wide portico formed by five carved stone arches.
  • House of the Marquis of Benicarlo ,  Bosch House , Walls of Benicarlo , Tower of the Martyrs
  • Beaches : Playa del Morrongo : It is ideal for families with its fine sand backed by a varied range of hotels, restaurants, bars and cafeterias. Length: 300 m Width: 30 m

Fiestas :
Fiestas Patronales : They are celebrated in honor of San Bartolome (August 24), Santos Abdon and Senen (“Sants de la Pedra”) and Santa Maria del Mar. They are a concession of King Carlos I on October 20, 1523. The festivities begin on Friday previous to San Bartolome with the proclamation of the Queen of the Fiestas, Dulcinea (representing the visitors) and Court of Honor. The program includes all kinds of events: a gala dance, concerts, popular orchestras, bullfighting and bullfighting in the port with bous a la mar, correfuegos (correfocs), giants and cabezudos, habaneras, gastronomy and auction of dishes, sports competitions, “sopar de pa i porta” (dinner at the Plaza de la Constitucion where more than 3,000 people gather), battle of flowers, and a fireworks display that closes the program. More than 250 events are organized in collaboration with the hundred local entities.

Fallas San Jose : a festival celebrated on March 19, and its Fallera Week, with all the paraphernalia that goes with it, popular falleros, tracas, rockets, “mascletas” and the 13 Fallas monuments that will burn the night of Santo. Today and after the Patron Saint Festivals, it is the most important, due to the massive influx of visitors in the fallera week, and its peculiar interpretation of the party, in the sense of opening the falles casales to all visitors. In 2014 he was awarded the Fiesta of Regional Tourist Interest.

Fiesta y Feria de San Antonio Abad : Declared a Festival of Provincial Tourist Interest, it is celebrated on January 16 and 17. In this festivity the bonfires abound in the streets, where the popular “torrada” is made, a happy gathering of neighbors around the fires, to roast the typical products of the land and the sea: artichokes, “petxines”, “galeres”, chops, etc. At dusk, in the Plaza de la Iglesia, the “Dimoni”, a figure with the image of the devil, is burned to scare away the evil spirits; later there is a parade of cars through the streets of the city, with several stops in which they sing “les lloes”, satirical verses usually directed to the criticism of local authorities. For some years the Fair has happened to be held in mid-December.

San Gregorio : It takes place on May 9. It is the day in which all the inhabitants of the city go in pilgrimage to the Ermita del Santo, in an atmosphere of healthy joy, and after the image of the Saint, who freed the city from deadly plagues in the past.

San Isidro Labrador : May 15. It is the party par excellence of the farmers: parades, agricultural exhibitions, procession, and a whole group of great importance in the area, that this day decides to leave the tools of cultivation to enjoy the spring and celebrate that next crop so expected throughout year.

Semana Santa : La anual celebracion del misterio central de la fe cristiana, el misterio de la pasion, muerte y resurreccion de Jesus cuenta en Benicarlo con la participacion de siete cofradias y gran numero de cofrades, lo que denota la importancia que estas celebraciones tienen en la ciudad.

Other festivities :

Artichoke Festival. In Benicarlo this vegetable has always had a strong roots among farmers and the year 1994 began to hold a party around it, with a series of socio-cultural events that culminate in a great “torrada” of artichokes. There are also some days of the pincho and a few gastronomic days that are based on this product and that are held from mid-January to early March. The year 2014 was declared a Festival of Tourist Interest of the Valencian Community.

Go next : Peniscola / Vinaros

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